You’re sitting in your living room bingeing on Netflix and minding your own business when suddenly there’s a loud crash and the house shakes and you miss the end of the episode.
But when a tree falls on your house or other property, who pays for the damage and cleanup? Whether you live in a heavily wooded area or have one lone tree, you might want to double-check your insurance policy.
The good news is that many homeowners insurance policies cover tree removal, damage, and cleanup, at least to some extent. Our independent insurance agents are here to help you get set up with the right homeowners insurance for your specific needs. But first, let’s take a closer look at tree damage cleanup coverage.
What Is Tree Damage Cleanup Coverage?
Broken down, tree damage cleanup coverage is an aspect of homeowners insurance that pays for the removal of trees or shrubs that have fallen on insured structures, as well as for any necessary repairs and for cleanup of debris.
Tree damage cleanup coverage might even pay to replace a fallen tree or shrub (as long as the cause of its fall was a covered peril), up to a specified limit.
What’s Included under Tree Damage Cleanup Coverage?
While it depends on your specific homeowners insurance policy, tree damage cleanup coverage can provide protection for a number of things. From removing the tree itself to repairs for the structure it fell on, we’ll take a look at a few common covered scenarios.
Tree damage cleanup coverage can help with the following:
- Fallen tree/shrub removal: Coverage will pay for the removal of fallen trees/shrubs, usually up to $1,000 total, as long as the cause of the fall was a covered peril. Depending on the policy, covered perils often include hail, ice, snow, sleet, or wind. There’s typically a $500 limit for the removal of each specific tree/shrub. The average cost to remove a fallen tree ranges from $75 to $150, depending on its size.
- Damage due to a neighbor’s fallen tree: Say a tree that doesn’t even belong to you falls on your house. This coverage can pay for the damage to your home (or other insured property like a patio or vehicle) if the cause of its fall was a covered peril. Coverage can also pay to remove the tree if it blocks your driveway or handicapped ramp.
- Debris cleanup/removal: Trees tend to leave behind a mess when they fall. Along with the removal of the actual plant, coverage can pay to clean up the debris left behind, whether that be sticks and leaves or broken glass.
- Replacement of the fallen tree/shrub: Standard policies provide coverage for the replacement costs of fallen trees/shrubs, as long as they were damaged by covered perils like fire, vandalism, lightning, etc. However, many policies exclude tree/shrub replacement if water or wind caused the fall.
Knowing that tree damage cleanup coverage takes care of the costs of removing/replacing the tree itself as well as the repair costs for your property can help put some of those homeowner worries at ease.
Why Would I Need Tree Damage Cleanup Coverage?
Mainly to know that your insured property will be covered regardless of how many trees loom nearby. While coverage is especially important for those living in heavily wooded areas, even one lone tree combined with a particularly severe storm is a recipe for disaster.
Also, if you’re someone who cares a lot for your surrounding foliage, this coverage could be especially meaningful to you.
Here are some common situations when tree damage cleanup coverage would be necessary:
- Your fallen tree/shrub damages your property
- Your fallen tree/shrub blocks your driveway/handicapped ramp
- Your neighbor’s fallen tree/shrub damages your property
- Your neighbor’s fallen tree/shrub blocks your driveway/handicapped ramp
For tree removal to be covered, it typically either has to fall on insured property (including vehicles) AND cause damage OR block someone’s driveway/handicapped ramp. A clean fall that doesn’t result in damage usually won’t be covered.
Does My Homeowners Insurance Policy Cover Tree Damage Cleanup?
Most likely, yes. Most homeowners policies include coverage for removal/replacement costs for fallen trees, as well as for any damage dealt to personal, insured property.
You’ll want to connect with your independent insurance agent to review your specific policy and see what’s covered. You may decide to add more coverage to your policy if you feel the built-in amount isn’t enough.
How To Find the Best Homeowners Insurance
In order to get the protection you need (and deserve), you’ll want to work with a trusted expert. Independent insurance agents will not only know where to find the best coverage and price, but also help to make sense of the fine print.
Consider your unique needs, then connect with an agent to help you take it from there. Have a list of your specific concerns and desires handy before you reach out, to help make the process even smoother.
Compare Homeowners Insurance Quotes with an Independent Insurance Agent
We all know how valuable your time is, so why spend it doing all the hard work yourself? From homeowners insurance policies to additional tree damage cleanup coverage, our expert independent insurance agents will help you determine what type of coverage makes the most sense for you.
Our independent insurance agents stay on top of the insurance industry and all the latest discounts so you don’t have to. That means they’ll help find the right coverage at the right price for you.
They’re not just there at the beginning, either. If disaster strikes, your agent will be there to help walk you through the claims process and make sure you are getting the benefits you’re entitled to. Now that’s thinking ahead.
TrustedChoice.com Article | Reviewed by Paul Martin
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